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I'm better... why won't he see that? - February 9th 2012, 09:11 PM

This thread has been labeled as triggering, particularly on the subject of eating disorders, by the original poster or by a Moderator. The contents of this thread might therefore not be suitable for certain sensitive users. Please take this into consideration before continuing to read.

So past few months I've been talking to one guy. One of my best friends who I completely trust. I struggled with an eating disorder and drug addiction when we first met and he was basically the only one who stopped, went out of his way and helped me get help.

I'm in a much better place now- I'm ED and drug free now and forever more and I'm starting to make friends and let myself have fun.

But he doesn't see it. It's still "just keep remember to stay positive" and "calm down and relax!" and "stop stressing!" whenever I talk to him. He doesn't see that I do that- I have an energetic (severely ADHD) personality so its likewise I'll be somewhat quick to jump. But I'm not stressing myself out to tears anymore.

Why can't he see that?

The one thing I can't get myself to relax about is getting close to others. I'm extremely self conscious about how I look and act around others. By myself I'm fine singing and dancing but I freeze when I'm around others. Singing in front of someone else? never. Dancing with anyone else (guy or girl)? I push them away unintentionally. Except for him. I'm okay singing around him and he can touch (not inappropriately) me without me moving away.

What's wrong?

Valentines Day is coming up and I've made pretty elaborate gifts for all my friends. Each is unique and very personalized and I've made one for him. SHould I still give it to him? What's even going on?
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Re: I'm better... why won't he see that? - February 9th 2012, 09:49 PM

You've only just gotten better, so it's normal for him to be skeptical about whether your truly okay or not. He's only seen you in one way: with an ED and drug addiction. It's going to take him some time to get used to the new you.

As for the Valentines Day gift, it's okay to give it to him. You spent time working on it, and it would be a waste not to give him the gift. Since it's personalized, it will mean a lot to him because it's a one of a kind gift, and homemade. Nothing can beat that!

Just keep remembering that since he didn't go what you went through, it's possible he doesn't understand these kinds of things. Give him some time to work things out through his own head, and keep trying to prove to him that you are truly better!

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Re: I'm better... why won't he see that? - February 9th 2012, 09:51 PM

Hey there! It can take a while for someone to overcome an eating disorder and/or drug addiction. I don't know how long you've been ED- and drug-free, but since you just met this friend a few months ago, and you were still struggling then, my guess is that you haven't been ED- and drug-free for very long. I'm not saying that's a bad thing - ANY amount of time is good! - but there's always the risk of relapse, especially during the early stages of healing. Your friend may see that you're okay now, but he may worry about your mental health anyway. If something stressful were to happen now, you would turn to others for help... but your friend may not be entirely convinced of that. It took you a while to change, and likewise, it's going to take ALL of your friends a while to change their mindsets about you and your ED/drug addiction. Time will eventually help them see things your way - but until then, you need to be patient.

I don't think there's anything wrong with giving him a Valentine's Day gift. I mean, why wouldn't you? He's still your friend, right? Or are you hoping he'll want to date you, and are you afraid he might not be willing to consider the idea because he still sees you as "at-risk"?

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Re: I'm better... why won't he see that? - February 9th 2012, 10:56 PM

I'm just so confused about it. He's never had an ED, but still knows plenty about how to treat one and deal with a friend in recovery/recovering. He's gone through a similar addiction, and while not going into too much detail about it, still offers support. I think that's why I'm so secure around him... He's seen me at my worst (drug withdrawals and overcoming fear foods were a very nasty) and never said a hurtful thing about it to me. He's understood that I needed to be around someone a few hours after eating a challenging meal so I didn't purge it. We didn't usually talk when something like this happened, but he got I just needed someone else in the room.

I'm ashamed of what I dished out to him. I'm so sorry I was such a monster to him at first... he didn't deserve to deal with that. No one does.

I really didn't have friends during the time of my ED and addiction. ED and drugs were my security blanket. It was always easier for me to feel secure around them than other people. Friends I have now (who I've literally only known for a little over a month? But its the closest thing to friends I've really had since I was super little) don't know anything about the drugs... a little about ED but I really don't like to talk about either.

The only reason I'm hesitant about the Valentines is I don't want it to send the wrong message. I don't know if he remembers it, but we had a long discussion about the fact I've never had a boyfriend or been intimate with anyone. He knows I absolutely love making art and music projects for people... but for Valentines Day? I have an obsession with very fine details and what I made is beautiful (not to brag) and I put a lot of time into it. I don't know what kind of message that would send. It's not like anything I've ever done before and goes along the Valentines theme.

I feel bad about all of it. I'm just now getting to be in a social life and its becoming very apparent I'm still extremely self conscious. Parties? No grinding for me. I'm fine until the second someone touches me. Then its retreat to the back. But yet I'm okay with falling asleep on his couch and waking up on his bed. I don't want to be attached to anyone.
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